UHQ reviews security, peace in 2018, Panchayat polls and border situation

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JAMMU: J&K Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti on Tuesday held high-level review of security situation in Jammu and Kashmir including the borders, where tensions have again escalated between India and Pakistan and took assessment from top brass of security officers on the impact of Panchayat elections on situation in the Valley.

JAMMU: UHQ reviews security, peace in 2018, Panchayat polls and border situation with J&K Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti in chair.

Top Army Generals, whose troops were deployed on the borders as well as hinterland, heads of para-military forces, civil administration, Jammu and Kashmir Police, Intelligence agencies and other senior officers, were present at the meeting that was chaired by Mehbooba Mufti and attended by Deputy Chief Minister Dr Nirmal Singh.
The Unified Headquarters meeting comes close on the heels of possible announcement of Panchayat elections in the State as the Chief Minister had stated that the polls would start from February 15.
Sources told the Excelsior that top brass of security forces and other agencies gave their assessment of the situation at the meeting, which lasted about four hours at official residence of Ms Mufti.”Situation prevailing at the borders, internal areas of Kashmir and possible impact the Panchayat elections can have on the situation figured prominently at the meeting,” they said, adding the Government wants to be fully satisfied about security situation in the Valley before making formal announcement of Panchayat elections in the State, which were pending for last more than one and a half year.
Last April, eight civilians were killed on the day of Lok Sabha by-election on Srinagar seat, leading to indefinite postponement of by-poll to Anantnag Parliamentary constituency. While the Government has announced that Panchayat elections will start from February 15, it wants to assess security situation and put all possible security measures in place before formally issuing a notification for the polls as large number of candidates were expected to be in the fray.
Moreover, sources said, the Government had to make all security arrangements for the Panchayat elections from within the para-military forces and Jammu and Kashmir Police for the elections.